Isle of Man

This smallish island, located in the Irish Sea halfway between Britain and Ireland, has been the recipient of a number of diverse cultural and political threads which have blended to create a unique composite of all the British Isles peoples.



The next 68 years saw a rapidly shifting series of take-overs as England and Scotland vied for supremacy on the Isle, as a part of the larger conflict between the two nations during the War of the Scottish Succession. Here is the sequence of changes in feudal authority:

In 1333 England achieved permanent control over the island. In that year, King Edward III invested local feudal authority to the Montague family. The Isle of Man had never surrendered its local traditions, including the regality invested in the leadership of the island, and thus the Montagues and their successors were granted the style "King of the Isles of Man". Here is a list of these later monarchs remembered as such because they were recognized as such by the English Crown, and because they form a succession of the last petty kingdom in Britain to survive into near modern times. In 1765, John Murray was successfully pressured by the government into accepting a large cash payment in return for surrenduring his title to the Crown, and transferring authority on the island to direct control by Great Britain. This was done because the British government was finding the island's thriving smuggler's trade between Britain and Ireland, and the subsequent loss of considerable revenue, intolerable. Thus ended the semi-independent Kingdom of Man. Even so, the Isle of Man to this day retains considerable local autonomy, and British law enacted in London is not considered binding on the island unless the island is specifically named in the Act. Local authority is vested in a legislature, the House of Keys, one of the oldest legislative bodies still in existence.

The following are the Governors and Lieutenant Governors of the Isle of Man. In effect they are the viceroys of the reigning British monarch on the Island. Local control, however, continued to be exercised by the ancient parliament, the Tynwald or the House of Keys.